Saturday, November 26, 2011

Blennies - Marine fish

Blennies - Marine fish are popular aquarium fish, and for good reason. They are peaceful, colorful, and many are downright helpful. For example, the aptly named Lawnmower Blenny will keep your green algae well trimmed and presentable. With the exception of Fang Blennies, Blennies are totally reef safe- in fact a reef environment is really best for them because they can be shy and the intricate rockwork of a reef provides ample hiding spaces. They are omnivores and should be fed a varied diet of frozen or live foods and plant matter. Blennies do not have teeth or functional jaw, so food must be small enough for them to swallow whole.
Blennies are often confused with Gobies, but there is an easy way to tell the difference. Gobies have two distinct dorsal fins, Blennies have a single dorsal fin that runs the length of their body. Also, Gobies' pelvic fins are fused to form a sucker, similar to Remoras.

Popular name
Scientific Name
Max size (cm)
Spinyhead blenny
Brown checkered body with distinctive yellow frills on head.
Bicolor blenny

Characterized by the striking contrast of a blue head and upper torso followed by a yellow orange lower torso.
Black combtooth blenny

Blackline fang blenny
Meiacanthus nigrolineatus
Yellow bodied with bright blue mask and dark black line running from the eye to the caudal fin.
Black sailfin blenny
Atrosalarias fuscus

Blue & gold blenny
Enchelyurus flavipes

Bundoon blenny
Meiacanthus bundoon
Black with lighter patch over caudal fin. Very distinctive swallowtail caudal fin.
Canary fang blenny
Meiacanthus oualanensis
Similarly shaped to M. bundoon, but canary yellow.
Diamond blenny
Malacoctenus boehlkei
Gray with black splotches, and a yellow mask. Shaped more like hawkfish than a blenny.
Ember blenny
Cirripectes stigmaticus

Lawnmower blenny
Salarias fasciatus
Tan and brown striped and spotted with iridescence. Requires Mature Tank.
Linear blenny

Ecsenius lineatus

Midas blenny
Ecsenius midas
Although often seen yellow, this fish has the ability to change its color to match the surroundings. It has a very distinctive swallowtail shaped caudal fin.
Molly Miller blenny
Scartella cristata
Mottled tan, white, and black covering the body and fins.
12 )
One spot blenny
Crossosalarias macrospilus

Red lip blenny
Ophioblennius atlanticus
Black to grayish yellow with red patch over mouth.
Red Sea mimic blenny
Ecsenius gravieri
Sky blue anterior fading to yellow towards the tail, with a black stripe running the eye to the base of the caudal fin.
Sailfin blenny
Emblemaria pandionis
Very similar to Salarias fasciatus but slightly darker and with a much larger dorsal fin.
Segmented sailfin blenny
Salarias segmentatus

Starry blenny
Salarias ramosus

Striped blenny
Meiacanthus grammistes

Tail spot blenny
Ecsenius stigmatura
Drab tan all over with dark spot at the base of the caudal fin and a light yellow line through eye.
Two-spot blenny
Ecsenius bimaculatus
The top half of this fish is black towards the front and fades to white closer to the tail. The bottom half is white with two distinctive black spots right under the pectoral fins.
Convict blenny
Pholidichthys leucotaenia
Not actually a blenny but from closely related family Pholidichthys. Juvenile has black eel-shaped body with a distinctive white stripe running down the body. Adults are yellow and black striped.

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